Sábado, 19 Agosto, 2017

Wasteful Lions sing the Blues after 1st Tour loss

Sonny Bill Williams put on a show tonight This match was billed as an All Black audition for Sonny Bill Williams and he was one of if not the best player on the ground
Galena Nuncio | 19 Junio, 2017, 17:10

Also on Saturday, England tackle Argentina in the first game of a two Test series, with three Saracens players pushing for selection.

Warren Gatland was insisting yesterday that his first-choice team remains off the agenda, but behind the scenes the starting XV must be formulating in the coaches' heads.

British and Irish Lions head coach Warren Gatland was intent on assuming a courageous face after his side suffered a 22-16 defeat to Super Rugby outfit the Blues at Eden Park in Auckland.

It turned out it was a test the Lions weren't prepared for as they ended up on the losing side with Williams' controversial try proving crucial.

But the tourists, fielding a completely different line-up to the one that started last week's victory - with 11 of them Lions debutants - suffered from a lack of discipline against a Blues side that is now bottom of the New Zealand Super Rugby conference.

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That may be why Gatland has chose to play Farrell as an out-and-out 10, despite the Saracens playmaker starring for England over the last 18 months at inside centre.

In testing conditions - rain hammered down for large parts of the game - the Lions looked to be heading into the break with the advantage after a CJ Stander converted score negated Reiko Ioane's early try for the Blues.

Alun Wyn Jones will captain the Lions in Warburton's absence, with Conor Murray, George North, Davies and Sean O'Brien all winning their first starts on the tour.

Smit doubts that Lions coach Warren Gatland will pick his best side before the first Test in Auckland on June 24.

"They are the best of the best and we want to let them have the talent". The speed of the game is quick, but think we are matching them physically, our attacking shape was better than on Saturday. Will they be good enough to beat the Crusaders at AMI Stadium in a match described already as the unofficial fourth test?

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Looking to build upon a far from impressive 13-7 tour opening victory over the Provincial Barbarians on Saturday, the tourists were undone late on by a superb try from Ihaia West as the Super Rugby franchise secured a memorable triumph.

"We've been working pretty hard behind in training in those areas to push the players".

Israel Dagg, included in the 33-man New Zealand Test squad to face Samoa and the Lions announced on Thursday, will start at full-back.

"Our discipline was poor and we've given away a lot of penalties in our first few games", the Welshman said.

He expects a set piece that started to hum at Eden Park will go up another cog against his own team's All Blacks tight five.

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Tune into talkSPORT from 8:30am on Saturday morning for LIVE and EXCLUSIVE commentary of The British and Irish Lions v Crusaders!


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